by Cassidy Kao
I had the opportunity to lead a poetry workshop, called The Wonderful World of Poems, to a group of five to seven year old students at IEA Academy on April 29, 2016. The goal of the workshop was to teach my students four types of poems – concrete, haiku, couplet and tercet- so they can appreciate different types. Also, I wanted them to try crafting their own poems.
The reason I wanted to lead the workshop was I really like poetry. I like how anybody can learn how to write poems quite easily as long as they know the rules. If I can learn how to write poetry, any kid can do it, too. That’s why I wrote my book, Roller Coaster, A Kid’s Guide on How to Write Poetry, when I was eight. Doing this workshop is taking it a step further because I get to teach to the kids in person. I love seeing their expression when they get what all the poems mean. I also love reading their creations. I told them not to worry about what they wrote. It could be as silly or as funny as they liked. I was pretty impressed with their creation because some of them had never written a poem before.
During the workshop, we played a couple poetry games, a tongue twister game and a guessing game. Besides the awesome poems they created, I think the games were the highlight of the workshop. My students thought the games were funny and I was happy that they were able to keep the kids engaged. One big lesson I learned from leading the workshop is that teaching is not easy. It took a lot of time and thoughts to prepare a lesson and it was a bit nerve wracking on the day of workshop. I was exhausted afterwards. This experience makes me appreciate all my favorite teachers’ effort
I think next I would like to create another poetry workshop and teach four more types of poems in the near future. I am very lucky to be part of IEA’s community. I love the classes, workshops and Genius Days put together by the Academy. I am also very thankful that the IEA gave me the chance to lead this workshop. Last but not least, I want to give Louise Hindle, Program Manager of IEA Academy, a big shout-out for helping me organize my thoughts and giving me valuable advice to make my workshop better.
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Cassidy Kao is the ten year old author of Constellation Exploration: Greek Mythical Stories Retold with Simple Facts and Fun and Mysterious Riddles and Roller Coaster: A Kid’s Guide on How to Write Poetry. She has many varied interests, from writing poetry to playing the piano to learning about plants, animals, rocks and minerals. But when you ask her what her favorite subject is, she says it’s math! She is excited to share her love of poetry with others and hopes to inspire more kids to create their own poetic masterpieces.